Monday, March 13, 2017

Barbara: ‘In the Boca office, we work like captains and play like pirates’

Smartmatic has grown exponentially in the last decade. However, most of our offices have remained as personal and embracing as when they first opened. Our Boca office is one of them.

Barbara Leon-McDonald, who has been here for almost a decade working on Global Business Support, gives us a general idea of the ‘Alice in Wonderland’ kind of life that our Boca team is used to. Not really for the craziness, which is still there, but mainly for the incredible mix of energy, fun, peculiar stories and long-lasting influence within the company.

Barbara warn us not to be fooled by first impressions. “The environment here aesthetically is college campus style and, high paced yet relaxed in a make-it-happen attitude kind of way.”

90% of the office contains all high level Smartmatic employees -at any given time-. “We house some of the top executives of the company, thus you have a collaboration of high energy, strong work ethics and the attitude that together we can make it happen. This, without losing the ability to smile, play pranks and make it a very comfortable environment. Very unusual for a high level executive arena.”

This is the reason behind the Boca office’s thrilling energy. “In this atmosphere where all employees are high level, we need to get used to a fast paced environment. However, our high level team members are the easiest going and they always make it a happy and easy going workplace. There is high respect but in a very peaceful almost comedic way.”

Barbara is one of the few women working in the Boca team, but the situation is changing and she is glad about the balance. “I was the only women in the office for a long time amongst all the men colleagues; but I’m happy to report that The Boca Raton office now houses 3 female employees, so for the first time ever the field is fair play.”

Joking apart, Barbara tells us that among the many things she appreciates about Smartmatic is the opportunity to work with people she respects and admires. “I take my job seriously and with high integrity. The highs are the people I work with, the lows are probably the deadlines we are always working on with minimal time - yet we always make it happen.”

For this devoted colleague, in the Boca office the camaraderie they have achieved during all these years, it is like the saying ‘work like a captain and play like a pirate.’ “We are a work family.”

However, the work itself and the organisation mission are also significant reasons to keep going for Barbara. “I enjoy the diversity of projects I work with on a daily basis. The daily phone calls with colleagues all over the world; and the satisfaction of knowing that as a company our main goal is to bring democracy to the world by offering quality services, machines, software and the best people, it is gratifying.  I'm from a country where democracy has suffered quite a lot, so, working for a company that strides to ensure that everyone can vote and that everyone's vote counts, fulfills me as an individual.”

Barbara has her purposes clear, as well as many other Smartmatic employees: “This team works hard. Most travel a lot which keeps them away from family and friends for a large portion of time, so when we work together, we try to keep it real and make it happen.”